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Thread: Am I required to open carry?

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    Founder's Club Member OC-Glock19's Avatar
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    I was confronted with a different situation last week and I didn't know what to do. I was going shopping with my wife at Wegman's on Monument Drive in Fairfax and I was carrying my 1911 under my shirt. I got to the cheese section and there I saw an employee dispensing samples of wine to potential customers.

    I immediately wondered if I should revert to open carry since I wasn't sure of the law in this case. The store was very crowded and busy, and I felt that it would have been unwise to make a motion to uncover my firearm. I didn't want to alarm anyone becausein a crowded store it's fairly difficult to change modes of carry while keeping alow profile.

    Can anyone help me out as far as the law here in Virginia on this? I can't find a clear answer myself.

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    Regular Member vermonter's Avatar
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    Oh my god! I really feel sorry for you Virginians and your strict laws! Here in Vermont you can CCW or OC anywhere including a police station. Don't be so paranoid about some wine tasting. If you are not a criminal and you are not printing, just CCW. There is no reason for the police to search you unless Virginia is one of those states where "reasonable" searches is allowed. Again, if you're not a bum there police won't even have a reason to look at you. CCW and stop worrying about your draconian police state!

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    Regular Member paramedic70002's Avatar
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    Politely inquire if the establishment is has a restaurant ABC license?
    "Each worker carried his sword strapped to his side." Nehemiah 4:18

    Guns Save Lives. Paramedics Save Lives. But...
    Paramedics With Guns Scare People!

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    Founder's Club Member OC-Glock19's Avatar
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    Vermonter, I was looking for enlightenment from someone in Virginia. No need to flap and crow about how great it is up there.

    My concern is with whether Wegman's meets the definition of Section 4.1-100 since there IS a restaurant in the store.

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    Founder's Club Member OC-Glock19's Avatar
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    paramedic70002 wrote:
    Politely inquire if the establishment is has a restaurant ABC license?
    That comes too close to asking for permission to carry, which I don't do. I'd rather find out beforehand so if I'm confronted I can speak from a position of knowledge.

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    No, it is not a restaurant or club within the meaning of 18.2-308(J3) - OC all you want, and don't tase more than "a couple."

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    Mike wrote:
    No, it is not a restaurant or club within the meaning of 18.2-308(J3) - OC all you want, and don't tase more than "a couple."
    Not to put words in his mouth, but I think what Mike means is CC all you want - that's what I read the question to be, since someone OC'ing wouldn't bump up against the law under any reading.

    As an aside, it must be wine-tasting season - I ran into a nearly identical scenario at my local Pentagon City Harris Teeter over the weekend. Though I was OC'ing, meaning I didn't face the issue (though I did get a little attention; I've OC'ed in that store many times, but this time the two on-duty managers "observed" me for a good 20 minutes while I was at the deli counter).

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    Here is Wegman's ABC license info...they have an "off-premise" type of license. I can't say with any authority, but it sure sounds like they were violating the terms of their license. With the type of license they have, you are not required to OC.

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    Mike wrote:
    No, it is not a restaurant or club within the meaning of 18.2-308(J3) - OC all you want, and don't tase more than "a couple."
    Maybe Mike had "tase more than "a couple".:what:...

    Meaning OC vs. CC

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    I'm not a VA resident but I find this question intriguing.

    Is giving away alcohol (samples) considered "serving"?

    IOW, if you go to your local hardware store (that doesn't have a license to "serve" alcohol) and your buddy the owner offers you a beer in his store, is he "serving" and you now required to OC?
    I doubt it. But am unsure of your VA laws. Just thought it would be a pertinent question in regards to the OP's situation.


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    Founder's Club Member OC-Glock19's Avatar
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    From the VABC web site FAQ page:

    Can a licensee sell or give away samples (tastes) of their offered alcoholic beverages (less than the normal amount) so that patrons may taste the product before purchasing a full serving?

    An on premise retail licensee can sell samples of their products. The only classificattion of retail license that may conduct free sampling is a gourmet shop license.

    Thanks, vrwmiller for the link.


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    OC-Glock19 wrote:
    From the VABC web site FAQ page:

    Can a licensee sell or give away samples (tastes) of their offered alcoholic beverages (less than the normal amount) so that patrons may taste the product before purchasing a full serving?

    An on premise retail licensee can sell samples of their products. The only classificattion of retail license that may conduct free sampling is a gourmet shop license.

    Thanks, vrwmiller for the link.
    Well, then, according to the link I provided, Wegman's does have a "groumet shop" license. So, they are permitted to provide free samples under the provisions of their license. So, my assumption above was incorrect.

    ...and that, my friends, is why I am not employed by VA ABC

    Still, I am glad that I was able to point you in the right direction.

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    Anybody know what the laws are in relation to wineries and wine-tasting while carrying?

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    72Malibu wrote:
    Anybody know what the laws are in relation to wineries and wine-tasting while carrying?
    In VA you just can't be drunk when carrying. You are considered drunk if you are charged with something like DUI, drunk in public, etc.

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    The license type they have is farm winery... doesn't seem to fit with the reastaraunt/club definition under va law the way I see it.

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    Founder's Club Member Tess's Avatar
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    OC-Glock19 wrote:
    I was confronted with a different situation last week and I didn't know what to do. I was going shopping with my wife at Wegman's on Monument Drive in Fairfax and I was carrying my 1911 under my shirt. I got to the cheese section and there I saw an employee dispensing samples of wine to potential customers.

    I immediately wondered if I should revert to open carry since I wasn't sure of the law in this case. The store was very crowded and busy, and I felt that it would have been unwise to make a motion to uncover my firearm. I didn't want to alarm anyone becausein a crowded store it's fairly difficult to change modes of carry while keeping alow profile.

    Can anyone help me out as far as the law here in Virginia on this? I can't find a clear answer myself.
    Actually, that became one of our "what if" discussions one day when I was OC and spouse was CC in Total Wine.

    We pretty much came to the same conclusion. Even though they had a wine tasting that day, they don't "serve" alcohol for consumption on the premises, and they're not a restaurant or club. So we figured no worries.
    Laws alone can not secure freedom of expression; in order that every man present his views without penalty there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population. -Albert Einstein

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    vermonter wrote:
    Oh my god! I really feel sorry for you Virginians and your strict laws!
    Gee, thanks for your sympathy. How's that secession going, BTW?

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    Poor Vermonter...Some people are just too tense to laugh at a good natured ribbing. Yes, poor Virginians! Poor Americans!

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    If your just tasting a sample... They are not actually "serving you" in the traditional sense.

    I guess it comes down to the meaning of the code. Does this place "serve" alcohol on a daily basis in quantity for mass consumption. You would have to consume many many samples before you would get tipsy. And then.. I doubt they will let you stay that long.

    But is does raise a good question.


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    I had a similiar question I asked a concealed carry course instructer and retired leo.Basically the way he told me was say you go to a park and there happens tobe a vendor selling beer your OK. But if the park has an event going on that sells alchoholthen you can't CC. I would venture to say you were OK to CC.

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    GLENGLOCKER wrote:
    I had a similiar question I asked a concealed carry course instructer and retired leo.Basically the way he told me was say you go to a park and there happens tobe a vendor selling beer your OK. But if the park has an event going on that sells alchoholthen you can't CC. I would venture to say you were OK to CC.
    I agree...

    I really do not think you would be in any trouble it you did taste only.

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    Founder's Club Member Tess's Avatar
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    GLENGLOCKER wrote:
    I had a similiar question I asked a concealed carry course instructer and retired leo.Basically the way he told me was say you go to a park and there happens tobe a vendor selling beer your OK. But if the park has an event going on that sells alchoholthen you can't CC. I would venture to say you were OK to CC.
    IANAL. If the park has an event going on that serves alcohol, that does not make them a "restaurant or club". Therefore, you're still OK to CC.
    Laws alone can not secure freedom of expression; in order that every man present his views without penalty there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population. -Albert Einstein

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    Founder's Club Member OC-Glock19's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the input, and for what it's worth I wasn't even sampling the wine. I'm more of a beer guy when I do drink (which is rarely).

    I know now that I'm okay to CC or OC at Virginia grocery store wine samplings.

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